Community Engagement Appointment

For Immediate Release: Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Sponsored by: County Administrative Office, Office of Equity, Inclusion & Community Engagement Division

Dahlstrom Appointed Manager of Community Engagement Program


Mike DahlstromWashington County Administrator Robert Davis announced today that Michael Dahlstrom will lead the county's broad community engagement effort, including providing administrative support to the county's Community Participation Organization (CPO) program.

Dahlstrom will begin his appointment on August 1.

Dahlstrom has been a senior planner with the Washington County Department of Land Use and Transportation, where he has worked since 2008. His assignments have included project management and oversight of major public involvement efforts, including the multi-year Aloha-Reedville Study and Livable Community Plan and Washington County's portion of the region-wide Urban and Rural Reserves process. His career before that included work as a consultant and small business owner.

Dahlstrom's educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Brooks Institute in Santa Barbara, California. He currently serves on the Executive Board for the Cascade Chapter of the International Association for Public Participation (IAP2). 

"Mike is highly regarded by his peers and has strong local and regional relationships," said Davis. "He is a strategic thinker and has had a history of success throughout his employment with Washington County. He comes to this new position with a great deal of passion, commitment and energy. We welcome Mike as the newest member of the County Administrative Office and look forward to continuing to work with him."

The new manager position is charged with supervising a staff of three and helping to implement enhancements to Washington County's community engagement program as identified by a 13-member Community Participation Transition Planning Team appointed in 2015 by the Board of County Commissioners.

Changes to the County's public engagement program were prompted in the fall of 2014 when OSU Extension Service announced that it was re-evaluating its strengths and role and would no longer administer Washington County's program supporting CPOs. In response to this announcement, the Board of County Commissioners charged the Transition Planning Team to explore "a broad range of public participation models and strategies" and to develop "several options for Board consideration so that a transition can be made in early 2016."

The team worked over an eight-month period through facilitated discussions to identify options for staffing the CPO program within the context of an enhanced community engagement program. After an assessment of potential institutional hosts beyond OSU Extension, the County Administrative Office was chosen as the program's new home, with oversight to be provided by the new manager. More information about the process can be found at the project's website at

Media Contact:

Philip Bransford, Communications Officer